Still, it might as easily become quickly forgotten by a cynical public, in this ever changing world. The idea of ‘tradition’ where our relatively quiet history is concerned when celebrated, sometimes seems bland, overdone or even downright maudlin to the point of being comical in the resulting hype. A little nationalism goes a long way; too much sometimes goes too far. It’s a matter of degree: just look south. Paeans will be no doubt be sung far and wide, but in the unfortunate event that the whole extravaganza becomes somewhat passé, less than advertised or even dull, I thought I’d get a word in about a thing or two in advance while hoping the aforesaid doesn’t happen.
Americans have generally fervently maintained that they are responsible for inventing every single modern thing back to about the wheel and most of them truly think it’s a fact, but there are actually some real exceptions and a few of those were actually thought up here or down there by Canadians. Basketball (James Naismith 1891) is one example. Another big one is the telephone, since A. G. Bell worked both in Canada and the U.S.A. and had considered the idea in the former location before its completion in the latter. As to nationality, I think Bell would most likely say he was a Scotsman. Superman would be a dual citizen given the citizenship of those who created him.
Other little items were definitely of Canadian design: egg cartons, five pin bowling, garbage bags, pablum, paint rollers, peanut butter, snow blowers, snowmobiles, snow…(etc. ad nauseum) along with Trivial Pursuit and the zipper are perhaps not pinnacles of achievement, but some are unquestionably worth honourable mention. Amplitude Modulation, a.k.a. am radio would be one and IMAX another in the field of communication and artistic expression. Banting and Best’s discoveries regarding insulin as a treatment for diabetes have helped countless people and electric wheelchairs have too. The railways around the world could not have been co-ordinated without Fleming’s Standard Time and International Space Station probably could not have been built without the Canadarm, as it’s known in this country.
But all in all, it’s probably only about beer, hockey and generally trying not to make things too difficult for those around us, because as Canadians we realize that they’ll most likely feel the same way and return such sentiments.